ORIN SWIFT WINES - making a global impression: 11 May 2022.

The story of Orin Swift Wines actually started back in 1995 when David Phinney took up the offer from a friend to visit Florence in Italy, and spent a semester studying. During this time, David was introduced to wine, how it was made, and he was instantly hooked. After finishing university an opportunity led to a job at Robert Mondavi Winery in 1997 as a seasonal vintage-vineyard worker. David quickly decided that if he was going to work this hard, it should be for himself, so this led in 1998 to founding Orin Swift Cellars in St. Helena California. The name of the winery is a combination of: ‘Orin’ which is his father’s middle name and ‘Swift’ the maiden name of his mother. Starting simply with two tonnes of purchased Zinfandel, he spent the next decade paying the bills by making wine for others as well as himself and has grown the brand to what it is today.
Orin Swift is known for its edgy, bold imagery, memorable names and creative labels wrapped around well-crafted, expressive wines. Innovation has led the brand to become a multi-national luxury wine brand with a passionate following. This sparked the interest of the world’s largest wine company E. & J. Gallo, who purchased the brand and vineyards back in June 2016.
Dave has stayed on to continue guiding and crafting these dynamic wines and over the past few years has grown his expressions. I can imagine this will continue for some time to come - which is great news for early followers and new wine enthusiasts enjoying these adventurous wines around the globe.

I recently had the opportunity to open the following 3 wines, now available in New Zealand - short notes to tempt your taste buds.

Orin Swift ‘Mannequin’ Chardonnay 2019
Grape Varietal: 100% Chardonnay
Growing Region: California - USA
Founder / Winemaker: David Phinney
4½ Stars ★★★★☆

Sourced from the Laguna Ranch and Del Rio vineyards in the Russian River Valley, the Stagecoach Vineyard on Atlas Peak and other select vineyards in Sonoma County, the 2019 Mannequin represents some of the best Chardonnay growing areas in California. 56% was in new French oak barrels, and aged sur lie for 7 months.
Inviting aromas of green apples, jasmine, white flowers and a hint of freshly cut pineapple and a subtle almond note. On the generous palate, you have a silky opulence, expressing juicy white peaches and nectarine all nicely balanced by deft oak, while retaining a vibrantly elegant finish of lemon zest and almond praline.

• Chill gently & serve between 9°- 10°C : 15.2% Alc. - Classic Dry Style : Cellar 4 - 5 years : *Retail ~ NZ$69.99

Orin Swift ‘Slander’ Pinot Noir 2019
Grape Varietal: 100% Pinot Noir
Growing Region: California - USA
Founder / Winemaker: David Phinney
4 Stars ★★★★

The 6th release of the ‘Slander’ Pinot Noir. Dave prefers to plunge the cap rather than using the pump-over technique. Gentle handling in the vineyard and cellar showcases the delicate aromatics and enchanting palate of Pinot Noir. Sourced from across California, this 2019 vintage includes fruit from Annapolis, Del Rio, Radian and Our Lady of Guadalupe vineyards.
The hypnotic nose has vibrant aromas of ripe red cherries with summer floral notes. The palate is detailed and well balanced staying bright and fresh on the palate due to the lifted natural fruit acidity, giving focus to cranberry, ripe cherries, sour plum, and defused tannins from time in oak. The wine stays lifted and varietal on the dynamic dry finish.

• Mild Decanting & serve between 15°- 17°C : 15.2% Alc. - Classic Dry Style : Cellar 7 - 8 years : *Retail ~ NZ$99.99

Orin Swift ‘Abstract’ Red Blend 2019
Grape Varietals: Blend of Grenache, Petite Sirah & Syrah
Growing Region: California - USA
Founder / Winemaker: David Phinney
4 Stars ★★★★

A collage is an assembly of numerous individual images that together, creates a grander piece of art, a statement. Abstract follows its namesake by showcasing an assemblage of Grenache, Petite Sirah & Syrah from 150 plots. And together, when blended, they become much more than they could on their own. Aged for 8 months in French & American oak, with 32% new oak.
Inviting aromas of ripe blueberries, plums, raspberries, red cherries and dried spice. An appealing palate seamlessly bringing to your senses dark plums, cassis and blueberry jam, mocha-chocolate, dried spices and tobacco. A nicely textured wine wrapped in rustic tannins and deft oak giving structure and balance to a lingering dry finish.

• Medium Decanting & serve between 16°- 18°C : 16.1% Alc. - Classic Dry Style : Cellar 7 - 9 years : *Retail ~ NZ$89.99

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These expressive Orin Swift Wines are available from Fine Wine Retailers • Restaurants • Wine Bars & Winery Website.
*(prices, vintages & availability will vary by outlet & country)

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